July 2018 started off on a Sunday, making it practically the perfect beginning for a month. On top of this, several new laws, across the United States, have been introduced and will be going into effect beginning the month of July. Some changes are simple and typical, like an increase in minimum wage.

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Others require a bit more effort to pull off and may even seem like a lifestyle change for those living in the designated areas.

Since these laws are just now being put into effect, it's unclear how well they'll go over. We can hope they're enacted with good intentions and help create a positive and progressive world.

California: Uber, minimum wage, and marijuana products

A new law has been passed in California regarding drivers for services like Uber and Lyft.

July brings exciting new laws in the US. [image source: Non Profit Organization Lawyers Oakland | Wikimedia Commons]
July brings exciting new laws in the US. [image source: Non Profit Organization Lawyers Oakland | Wikimedia Commons]

The bill makes it unlawful "for a person who has 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a motor vehicle when a passenger for hire, as defined, is a passenger in the vehicle at the time of the offense." These drivers are now punishable for DUIs with a 0.04 percent alcohol content rather than a 0.08 percent.

Recreational Marijuana became legal in California at the beginning of 2018. According to CNN, marijuana products sold in the state "must now pass additional tests for certain chemicals, pesticides, and foreign materials."

San Francisco became the first city in the country to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour.

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This is a one dollar increase from the city's previous minimum wage. Moving forward, the wage is set to be adjusted every July in order to meet needs based on the Consumer Price Index.

Going green

The city of Seattle is doing its part to help make American more environmentally friendly. Plastic straws and utensils are now banned for all food service businesses, including restaurants, delis, coffee shops, food trucks, grocery stores, and cafeterias.

Instead, businesses can opt for straws and utensils made from more green materials, such as paper, bamboo, and steel. This is an effort to decrease plastic pollution specifically from single-use plastic products.

According to CNN, violators of this new ban are subject to a $250 fine.

School rules

A new law in Virginia allows unstructured recreational time, meaning students may now have longer recess periods. The only thing schools have to abide by is "that such unstructured recreational time does not exceed 15 percent of total instructional time or teaching hours."

Maryland and Indiana are working toward educating students about the potential dangers of sun exposure.

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Since actions speak louder than words, students are now allowed to bring sunscreen to school without a doctor's note or prescription and apply during appropriate times.

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